JOHN CURTIS - Daily Union Sports Editor
SHELBYVILLE, IL. —
Shelbyville (#6 seed) has been playing better ball of late, but they were matched up against #2-seed Maroa to open their play in the Vandalia Holiday Tourney on Wednesday. The Rams served notice on Maroa and the rest of their pool by coming within four points of the Trojans, 60-56.
Shelbyville led after the 1st, 14-13 and was within one at the break, 26-25. They were just two points back after the 3rd, 42-40. The 4th was the same story, the Rams refused to let Maroa go on a run. But the Trojans were able to hold on to their lead at the final bell.
It was a well-matched game in some ways and not so in other ways. More made more total field goals than Shelbyville 23 to 19. Maroa out-scored Shelby 40 to 24 inside the arc, a 16-point advantage. Maroa shot 54% inside the arc, Shelby just 36%.
Shelby out-scored Maroa from the arc making seven 3-pointers to just three from Maroa for a 12-point advantage (21 to 9). Shelby shot 7-of-20 from the arc, Maroa 3-of-10. Even Shelby’s 6-7 center Brody Bence drained a pair of treys. Maroa shot 30% from the arc.
That still left Shelby four points short. Shelbyville shot a little better at the line, 11-of-16 at the line (69%). Maroa was 11-of-18 at the line (61%). But that still left Shelby back by four.
Both teams committed 11 turnovers in the evenly-matched game. Maroa out-rebounded Shelby 27 to 21. That still left Shelby a hand full short.
Bence, who scored 32 against Neoga, then 18 against Stew-Stras, led the Rams with 19 points against Maroa. He was 6-of-10 from the field, including 2-of-2 from 3-point range. He also was a perfect 5-of-5 at the line, with four rebounds.
Two other Rams were in double figures. Nate Standerfer scored 12 points, getting all of his points from artillery range. Spencer Shadwell scored 11 points, making 3 buckets, one from the arc, plus 2-of-3 at the line. He also hustled for four boards.
Tucker Schwengel led the Rams in rebounding with seven, to go with 3-of-4 at the line. Luke McConnell came off the bench to pace Bence and chipped in five points and three boards.
Shelby begins the tourney with their 2-game day. They will play #3-seed Vandalia later on Wednesday at 8 p.m.
Maroa 60, Shelbyville 56
Ram stats: Bence 19 (4/8 2s, 2/2 3-pt FGs, 5/5 FTs), 4 rebounds; Standerfer 12 (0/4 2s, 4/10 3-pt FGs); Shawell 11 (3/8 2s, 1/5 3pt FGs, 2/3 FTs), 4 rebounds; McConnell 5 (2/2 FGs, 1/2 FTs), 3 rebounds; Keown 4 (2/4 FGs, 0/2 FTs), 1 rebound; Schwengel 3 (0/4 FGs, 3/4 FTs), 7 rebounds; Breeden 2 (1/1 2s, 0/3 3-pt FGs), 1 rebound; Hendryx (0/2 FGs) 1 rebound. Team FGs 19/53. 3-Pointers: 7/20 (Standerfer 4, Bence 2, Shadwell). Team FTs 11-of-16. Rebounds 21.
Maroa stats: Ascherman 20 (5/7 2s, 2/4 3-pt FGs, 4/7 FTs), 5 rebounds; Clawson 17 (6/7 2s, 0/2 3-pt FGs, 5/5 FTs), Murphy 8 (4/9 FGs), 9 rebounds; Leighton 7 (1/3 2s, 1/3 3-pt FGs, 2/2 FTs), 5 rebounds; Hockaday 6 (3/7 2s, 0/1 3-pt FGs, 0/2 FTs), 2 rebounds; Beckman 2 (1/3 2s, 0/2 FTs), 1 rebound; Ritter (0/1 FGs), Ejankowski 1 rebound. Team FGs 23/47. 3-Pointers: 3 (Ascherman 2, Leighton). Team FTs 11-of-18.